WORDS Amelia Brown PHOTOS Henrique Wilding
A modern beach house in a prime spot in Yzerfontein is the picture of comfort and easy living.
That’s all you really want in a beach house. (But uninterrupted sea views, a designer kitchen and smart, wind-conscious layout are nice, too.) It is the connection to nature that attracted Evi and Jochem Elsner to Yzerfontein. “We always wanted to live close to the sea and be surrounded by nature,” says Evi. “After looking up and down the coast, we found Yzerfontein. Here, we’ve got free roaming ostriches, tortoises, bokkies and dassies, and Cape Town is only 80 km away.”
Yzerfontein is a gem on the West Coast: a charming fishing village with a long white beach from where you can spot whales and dolphins, and abundant wildflowers in spring. After working in Somerset West for 15 years, the property developer and interior designer duo relocated their home and business headquarters to this seaside village.
They turned their attention to building homes that they would want to live in, homes that consider light and lifestyle, wind shelter and entertaining, starting with the property next door. With a green belt front and back, the house has guaranteed views, plus the unique curve of the coastline offers a panoramic seascape.
Here, the Elsners built a barefoot beach house with three en-suite bedrooms and two large decks, one facing the sea, the other into the fynbos. It’s been cleverly orientated to beat the prevailing wind – there’s a reason Yzerfontein is so popular with kite surfers.
“The challenge of being newcomers to Yzerfontein was finding suppliers and subcontractors, but I am happy to say we found everything we needed,” says Evi. “We’re very proud of creating a space where you can interact with one another or be by yourself.” Evi describes the kitchen as the heart and the link. Flanked by frameless glass doors, the space flows seamlessly to the deck, entertainment area and pool. Standing here and looking through the opposite doors to the fynbos beyond, it’s clear to see the structure’s interconnectedness with the landscape.
Natural materials were used in a palette of deep greys and crisp white. Whereas the rest of the house features traditional white A-frame ceilings with exposed rafters, which give the space a calming beach house atmosphere, the kitchen has a concrete bulkhead that suits its clean, modern lines.
The exterior has the satisfying simplicity and linear angles of a Monopoly house. Sharp-edged A-frame wings shelter the entertainment areas, and it’s painted in the same modern two-tone palette as the interior.
The new owners, who are from Austria, saw pictures of the house and fell for it. They love the idea of being able to just move in and feel at home. This effortless livability is a result of both the layout and Evi’s interior design. “We wanted to create a space that’s easy to live in and maintain, while feeling relaxed and cosy,” she says.
Perhaps the best place to listen to the house’s signature soundtrack of waves and birds is from the bath in front of doors adorned in white curtains that open directly onto the fynbos.
For more information, visit home-concept.cc.